Dre Kirkpatrick has setback with knee

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The Bengals were hoping to get their first look at first-round pick Dre Kirkpatrick in game conditions on Thursday, but his status has been cast in doubt thanks to the knee that’s caused him trouble all summer.

Kirkpatrick missed practice Monday with soreness in the knee he injured while working out before the start of training camp. The team sent him to a doctor to check things out and should find out more about his status in the next couple of days.

“He’s got a little bit of soreness,” coach Marvin Lewis said, via the Associated Press. “So they’re checking him out to see where he is. It wasn’t expected. We don’t know what it is. It’s just sore.”

Kirkpatrick was only cleared to practice last week, so the soreness isn’t particularly troubling if there’s no structural damage in the knee. What’s more troubling is the timing of the setback since it could cost Kirkpatrick his only chance to get some game reps before things start to matter. For a cornerback who admitted to never backpedaling in high school and college, such reps would be very valuable if they came without the prospect of making a blunder that winds up costing his team a game.

That might be impossible, though, and the Bengals might have to deal with Kirkpatrick learning on the fly as a rookie.